Apple unveils iPad Air, Retina iPad mini

Original iPad gets a makeover now called the iPad Air, iPad mini finally gets a Retina display

NEW IPADS. Apple shows off two new iPads in its October keynote

MANILA, Philippines – Apple unveiled a refreshed lineup of tablets at its “we’ve got a lot more to cover” event in San Francisco Tuesday, October 22 (October 23 Philippine time). 

The line up includes two new devices, a US$399 iPad mini with Retina display and a $499 dollar iPad Air.

iPad Air

The iPad Air is an updated version of the original 9.7-inch iPad.

The new model adapts the form factor of last year’s iPad mini, with a smaller bezel and diamond cut chamfered edges. At 1 pound, Apple is calling it the “lightest full sized tablet in the world.”

The new device is powered by an A7 chip, similar to what we saw in the recently released iPhone 5S. Apple promises the new chip will provide 8x faster performance and up to 72 times better graphics.

The cameras on the new iPad Air also get an upgrade. Apple’s next generation FaceTime HD (front facing) camera has better backside illumination sensors and larger pixels for better low light performance when making those FaceTime calls in the dark. The main 5 megapixel iSight Camera is also said to have better optics.

Battery life stays at 10 hours despite the new form factor thanks to the A7 chip. Noticeably missing from this update is the is Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint scanner that debuted on the iPhone 5S. 

The iPad Air is available in silver and space gray and starts shipping in select markets (not including the Philippines) on Nov 1, 2013. The 16GB WiFi-only model is priced at $499 and goes up to $929 for the 128GB WiFI + cellular model. 

Retina iPad mini 

A much requested feature, Apple finally brought the Retina screen to the iPad mini. The new iPad mini with Retina display fits 3.1 million pixels (2048 x 1536) into its 7.9-inch screen. If you’re counting that’s about 326 pixels per inch.

This new iPad mini gets the same A7 chip, 5-megapixel iSight camera and FaceTime HD camera as the iPad Air. 

It will be available in silver and space gray when it ships “later in November.” The iPad mini with Retina display starts at  $399 for the 16GB WiFi only base model and goes up to $829 for the 128GB WiFi + Cellular models.

Old models

In the US, Apple will continue selling the 16GB WiFi only iPad 2 for $399, and the original (non-Retina) iPad Mini for $299 for the 16GB WiFi model and $429 for the 16GB WiFi + cellular model. –

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